In less than 15 year Baltic Creative has led the remarkable revival of the Baltic Triangle district in Liverpool and now the model is to be replicated at a second Merseyside location. Tony McDonough reports
A plan to create a second Baltic Creative site in the Liverpool city region is back on track after being delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Less than 15 years ago Baltic Creative Community Interest Company (CIC) helped lead the incredible rebirth of Liverpool’s Baltic district. Back in 2007 the area was just a collection of empty and derelict docklands warehouses just south of the city centre.
In the years since the area has been the recipient of investment worth £128m with £62m of new developments currently on site. Baltic Creative itself is home to 180 digital and creative businesses, employing 650 people.
At the end of 2019, Baltic Creative CIC published an plan to replicate its successful model across the Liverpool city region. Southport was identified as the ideal location for the first new site.
In March 2020, the pandemic took hold and the expansion plans were paused. However, in an interview with the latest Baltic Triangle Podcast, Baltic Triangle CIC managing director, Mark Lawler, says the Southport plan is now live again.
He and his team are now working on the project along with Sefton Council, Southport BID, Southport College, and other partners. They hope to have the facility up and running in the next 12 months.
Speaking on the podcast, Mark said: “In 2019 Baltic Creative launched its plan for the next five years. We talked about growing our footprint both here in the Baltic and across the wider city region.
“We are working in Southport where Baltic Creative is likely to launch a new space in the next 12 months. It will be the first site outside of the Baltic Triangle. That is really exciting and we are working with a range of business partners there to make that happen.”
In the podcast, Mark also talks about supporting other creative and digital clusters in other parts of the city region and he explains how Baltic Creative was able to deal with the challenges posed by the pandemic.
This month’s Baltic Triangle Podcast also features an interview with writer James Corbett. He has set his debut novel, The Outsiders, in 1980s Liverpool.